UCLA Extension Online: Economic Development and Nation Building in Native America
Economic Development and
Nation Building in Native America (Online)
January 12 to March 30, 2009
Economic development is a critical challenge across Native America. On many reservations, employment opportunities are scarce, reliance on public assistance is high, and the local economy is weak. Yet on other reservations, tribes have established thriving Indian-owned ventures and built economies that generate employment and income even beyond the borders of their reservations.
While some of the variation in economic performance can be explained by underlying levels of natural resources, human capital, and other internal factors, research has shown that tribes with strong and capable institutions of self-government, a long-term vision for their economies, and a purposeful regard for matching business initiatives to their tribal culture enjoy significantly improved chances of economic success.
This online course examines several real-world case studies of economic development strategies and projects from across Indian country and evaluates the factors that contribute to their success and failure. Instruction advocates a nation-building approach to economic development—a view, which acknowledges that developing a vibrant economy, is as much a political, cultural, and social challenge as it is an economic one.
Given the heterogeneity of Native cultures and the circumstances in which they are located, no one solution will work in all settings. Instead, this course seeks to equip current and future leaders with the skills to think analytically about economic development strategies in their respective cultural contexts.
Deron Marquez, MA, PhD, candidate in politics. Served as Tribal Chairman to the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, 1999-2006.
Online courses are instructor-led and are accessible 24/7, from home, from work, and abroad. An online orientation is available at uclaextension.blackboard.com
Other online Tribal Legal Studies courses offered throughout the year are: Introduction to Tribal Legal Studies, Federal Indian Law and Policy, Economic Development and Nation Building in Native America, Violence Against Native Women, Protecting Cultural Property in the Bio-Tech Age,
Preservation of Tribal Cultural Materials in Tribal Collections (Blended), Indigenous Cultural Resources Protection in California: Theory and Practice, and
Legal Research, Analysis, and Writing in a Tribal Context.
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